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June 2013
In This Issue
Safe Harbour: Respect for All Program Training
Multicultural Health Information
Upcoming Events
New Resources on the AMSSA Website
Preparing for the BC CFP
AMSSA Announces Diversity Award Recipients
Aboriginal Inclusion in the Workplace an Inclusion Cafe Dialogue
May was a Diversity Health Fair Month!
Safe Harbour:
Respect for All Program Training


We are now delivering webconference Safe Harbour workshops to organizations and businesses outside of our provincial network. Please contact Lindsay Marsh for more details:


Be sure to visit our website at,  follow us on Twitter @SafeHarbourCdn and Like our Facebook page for the latest updates.

Respect for All - Pass It On! 


Multicultural Health Information 

AMSSA continues to update the online Research Database on a regular basis. You can find up to date and relevant information on immigrant health. 
Visit the AMSSA Research Database here.


We are also pleased to offer online access to Multicultural Health Guides of Programs, Services and Resources available to residents of the communities in which the Diversity Health Fairs take place. Access the Multicultural Health Guides here.


Upcoming Events


Join AMSSA and South Vancouver Neighbourhood House for an engaging Inclusion Café focused on workplace inclusion for the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgendered, two-spirited and queer (LGBTTQ) community.


Date / Time: Thursday, July 18th, 10:00am-12:00pm


Venue: Peter Kaye Room, Vancouver Public Library, Central Branch, 350 W Georgia St., Vancouver 


RSVP with Lindsay Marsh at or 

Save the date for AMSSA's Annual General Meeting! 


Date/Time: Friday, September 27, 2013, 

3:30pm - 6:00pm


Venue: Peggy Gunn Woodland Hall, VanDusen Botanical Garden


A formal invitation will be sent in advance to the AGM. 


Staff Movement


AMSSA would like to extend a heart felt thank you and good luck to Jennifer Basu, Sectoral Support Coordinator who has decided to move toward new challenges. Jennifer's last day at AMSSA was May 31st. We will miss you!


Congratulations to Lisa Elliott who will be taking on the role as AMSSA's Sectoral Support Coordinator. Lisa has worked with AMSSA since September 2012 as the Diversity Health Fair Coordinator and Project Coordinator in Settlement Transition Training.


 Quick Links



AMSSA E-Symposia Videos

2013 Multifaith Calendars  

AMSSA Insider


Like AMSSA on Facebook
Join Our Mailing List
New Resources on the AMSSA Website


Transition Updates AMSSA has been working with the Immigrant & Integration Branch (IIB) and Citizenship & Immigration Canada (CIC) to support Service Provider Organizations (SPOs) in British Columbia (BC) during the transition of settlement services from Provincial to Federal oversight. Visit the AMSSA website for CIC Transition Updates here


This winter, AMSSA launched the AMSSA Info Sheet Series which examine different topics and highlight important facts and trends impacting the settlement sector in BC.


AMSSA recently created a new web page for the AMSSA Info Sheet Series, so they can now be downloaded directly from the AMSSA website.


Two new editions were published in May - Refugees: Statistics and Trends in Canada and BC and National Household Survey: Highlights - and can be accessed here.


Preparing for the BC CFP 
This spring, AMSSA organized several meetings and events to help WelcomeBC service providers prepare for the upcoming BC Call for Proposals (CFP), which will be issued by Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) in early June. Topics included: CIC Western Region, Local Immigration Partnerships (LIPs), and the CIC CFP process.


AMSSA also hosted a series of e-symposia, or live webcasts, on CIC's procurement and contracting approaches and administration of its Grants and Contributions Program. They were moderated by Heather Dickson, former ADM, BC Ministry of Social Development, and included presentations and discussions with settlement sector representatives from BC, Alberta and Ontario.


AMSSA created a toolkit of supporting resources, which was distributed to WelcomeBC service providers and can be found on the AMSSA website here.


AMSSA Announces the 2013 

Diversity Award Recipients


AMSSA is happy to announce the recipients of the 2013 Diversity Awards:


Riasat Ali Khan Diversity Award:

  • Community Partnership Network, Inter-Cultural Association of Greater Victoria

Service Recognition Staff Award:

  • Shashi Assanand, Vancouver & Lower Mainland Multicultural Family Support Services Society

Service Recognition Volunteer Award:

  • Staff Sergeant Douglas Newman, Inter-Cultural Association of Greater Victoria 

AMSSA would also like to recognize the nominees of the 2013 Diversity Awards:


Riasat Ali Khan Diversity Award Nominee:

  • Welcoming Communities Program, Multicultural & Immigrant Services Association of North Vancouver Island

Service Recognition Staff Award Nominees:

  • Devinder Chattha, Progressive Intercultural Community Services Society 
  • Rajinder Lotay, Kamloops Immigrant Services

Service Recognition Volunteer Award Nominees:

  • Juan Ferreria Pinho, YMCA
  • Khammy Quan, Multicultural & Immigrant Services Association of North Vancouver Island

Congratulations to the award recipients and nominees! The awards will be presented at AMSSA's Annual General Meeting on September 27, 2013 held at the VanDusen Botanical Garden.


Find more information about AMSSA's Diversity Awards here.


Aboriginal Inclusion in the Workplace an Inclusion Café Dialogue

AMSSA and South Vancouver Neighbourhood House, in partnership with the Vancouver Public Library and the City of Vancouver, hosted an Inclusion Café, the first of a series of four, on May 29th. The Café was focused on Aboriginal Inclusion in the Workplace.


The Inclusion Café Dialogue Series aims to generate a deeper understanding of diversity and inclusion in our communities by examining the impacts of stereotypes, exclusion, and discrimination on diverse members of our communities and by sharing inclusive practices and policies across sectors. The focus of our first Café was driven by the knowledge that Aboriginal people make up the fastest-growing segment of Canada's labour force. Meanwhile, Canadian companies are having trouble filling job vacancies. There is a disconnect between the two, but why?


Latash Maurice Nahanee, an elder from the Squamish Nation, gave his blessing to the Café. Our keynote speaker was Erralyn Thomas, Female Youth Representative with the BC Assembly of First Nations and an Executive on the AFN National Youth Council. Erralyn set the tone for the moderated small group discussions to follow by sharing about the importance of understanding the cultural contexts of Aboriginal job seekers, particularly the younger generations.


Aboriginal Inclusion - Inclusion Cafe Dialogue
Group discussions at the Aboriginal Inclusion in the Workplace Café


The small group discussions allowed participants to share promising practices and policies focused on Aboriginal inclusion being implementedin their workplace. The dialogue resulted in new perspectives and ideas for collaboration among participants that we hope will lead to greater cultural understanding of Aboriginal people in B.C.


AMSSA wishes to thank Monica Howard with Aboriginal Child and Family Support Services for her promotion of the Café and Lisa Henderson for preparing the bannock. 

May was a Diversity Health Fair Month!


AMSSA was pleased to attend four diversity health fairs that were held in Surrey (May 11), Abbotsford (May 18) Terrace (May 25) and Nanaimo (May 30). 


We wish to congratulate the staff of our member agencies that have been involved in planning and delivering the diversity health fairs in their communities.  Survey evaluation results indicate that their efforts   as well as the large number of health agencies that participated in these events had a notable impact on increasing the access of members of BC diverse communities to up to date health information and services related to the prevention of chronic diseases in our province.  


Nanaimo HealthFest 2013
Bollywood Dancers at the 2013 Nanaimo Healthfest